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A Recipe for Water
10% off eBook (EPUB)
10% off Paperback
Categories: 21st Century, Welsh
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
eBook (EPUB) Needs ADE!
(Pub. Apr 2012)
Paperback (96 pages)
(Pub. Apr 2009)
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Walking by water through the gates
of castle, mountains, sky, I think of him,
working the stone-boats on the Menai Straits
to the salt psalm of the sea and the wind's hymn
in the tug and thrust of the tide.
from 'Quayside' by Gillian Clarke
The drop of water on the tongue, writes Gillian Clarke, 'was the first word in the world', and the language of water is the element in which these poems live. Ocean currents create histories and cultures - the port cities of Cardiff and Mumbai; myths are born where great rivers have their source high in the mountains. A bottle of spring water contains the mineral elements of life; we can read the earth's deep history in arctic ice. We share the rhythms of migrations in the pull of tides and seasons through rivers and estuaries.
In her first collection since becoming the National Poet of Wales in 2008, Gillian Clarke explores water as memory and meaning, the bearer of stories that well up from a personal and collective past to return us to the language of the imagination in which we first named the world.
A Pocket Dictionary
Glas y Dorlan
The Fox and the Girl
A T-Mail to Keats
The Ledbury Muse
A Recipe for Water
A Barge on the Severn
Man in a Shower
At the Banganga Tank
In the Taj
Reader's Digest Atlas of the World
The Rising Tide
Letting the Light In
House of Dreams
A Sonnet for Nye
Death's Head Hawkmoth Caterpillar
Storm over Limousin
Landscape with Farm
Bach at St Davids
Cattle, Hayfield, Storm
Love at Livebait
Castell y Bere
The Oak Wood
The Darkest Day
Awards won by Gillian Clarke Commended, 2024 A Poetry Book Society Spring Recommendation
(The Silence) Short-listed, 2022 The Wales Book of the Year
(Roots Home) Long-listed, 2020 The Laurel Prize for Ecopoetry (Zoology) Winner, 2011 Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.
Winner, 2012 Wilfred Owen Award
Praise for Gillian Clarke 'The Silence is not concerned only with the pandemic. Gillian Clarke's writing frequently offsets her awareness of the naturalness and depth of her roots in rural Wales with the sense of strangeness which comes from having English as her "mother-tongue". These meditations are delicately handled in the collection, and particularly striking in the context of environmental catastrophe. What now threatens the landscape which Clarke has farmed and nurtured, in life as in verse, are shadows which roll across the globe, turning, for many people, the possibility of belonging anywhere into wishful thinking. The Silence is full of poems which remind us of the importance of place, and the demand of its words and silences to be listened to.'
Carol Rumens, The Guardian Poem of the Week
'There is a numinous quality to this book, a kind of spiritual attention which reveals, by silence and contemplation, the wondrous.'
Stephen Sexton, Irish Times
'This tug between the factual and the more mystical world beyond is at the heart of the collection. Science can describe the Land but not how love of particular places works within the human spirit...a richly varied and substantial collection'
D A Prince, the North
'Clarke has a direct line to the natural world. She paints the Welsh landscape without idealising or romanticising, and in the process shows that nature doesn't need to be elevated to inspire a quiet awe.'
Financial Times Best Books of 2017
'Always openings. Perceptions never alien to the new. No borders enclose her ideas. They are allowed to roam in her meticulous phrasing. And yet her greatest strength is, paradoxically, her moments of both closure and trapped moments of insight delivered to us grateful readers with faithful intelligence.'
'Clarke is a singer among poets, a celebrant of landscape, trees, insects, dead ewes, a writer whose rhythms and vocabulary seem tenaciously rooted in the traditions of the place of their origin.'
The Tablet 'Gillian Clarke's outer and inner landscapes are the sources from which her poetry draws its strengths.'
Carol Ann Duffy, Guardian
'Gillian Clarke's [poems] ring with lucidity and power... Clarke's work is both personal and archetypal, built out of language as concrete as it is musical.'
Anne Stevenson, Times Literary Supplement 'In Ice Gillian Clarke explores memory and identity through a series of winter landscapes.'
Adam Newey, The Guardian, 1st December 2012
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